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Friday July 15-Ft. Gamble, Nut Factory, Granola Bakery, Bainbridge Island, Bremerton

 It was not raining when we woke up this morning, it was cloudy, and the weather forecast is for no rain today. Carol, Al, Joe, and Ginny all were up early and took a ferry to Victoria BC. We have been there before, so we decided not to go along. Instead, we drove east on Hwy. 101 to see the eastern side of the Olympic Peninsula and the Hood Canal area. We had seen a book on “Odd Attractions in Washington State”, and this was in the book located at the intersection of Rt 20 and Hwy. 101. 

Our first stop was in Ft. Gamble.

There wasn’t a lot to Ft. Gamble, just this general store and the post office. There were a few nice houses, and that was it….

We continued south and when we made the turn onto Rt. 19, there was a “nut factory”.

We pulled in for the samples and tour. This is a very small building, but the business is flourishing. The owner did not like the peanuts he bought at baseball games, so he decided to learn about peanuts and set up a business roasting them himself. The business now has 8-10 employees and he is looking for another location to triple the size of the facility. He also roasts hazelnuts, cashews, and sunflower seeds. They import the peanuts from Texas and Virginia. The peanuts are roasted fresh in a cylinder, instead of on a belt that is run through an oven, keeping the peanuts moving during the process. Their peanuts are available only in 3 states, so that they can be bought fresh. We had to agree, the peanuts were excellent, not like the junk we used to buy at FedEx Field.

While there, we were told that the Granola Factory and Bakery, in town, uses their peanut butter and bakes cookies for them. So we continued into town to the Granola Factory & Bakery.

We sampled Lavender Granola. Can’t say that either of us liked it, but it was better than we thought it would be. We also sampled some of their trail mix, but only bought a cookie to share, as the trail mix was really expensive.

Our next stop was on Bainbridge Island. The main street of the town of Bainbridge was under construction and closed to cars. We found a parking place, across from the information center. The gentleman at the information center told us about some wine tastings and about the Japanese American Exclusion Memorial. Here is a mural we saw in town; they seem to be really big on murals in the NW.

We walked around the construction, to the wineries, but both of them were closed. So we took the car and drove out to the Memorial.

In 1940 there were over 1900  Japanese-Americans living on Bainbridge Island. All were law-abiding, hard-working individuals, many, who owned strawberry farms. After Pearl Harbor, they were rounded up, placed on a ferry, and shipped off to Death Valley in California, to be incarcerated for the duration of WWII. Unfortunately, when many returned, the people who were the caregivers of the farms demanded payment for the time and effort, so the Japanese-Americans ended up just giving up the farms. They were reimbursed by the government during the George W. Bush-era. The memorial was a wall, which you walked past, reading the names of the town people who were incarcerated for the duration of the war. The memorial is on the spot where they were loaded onto the ferry. The ferry is now located in a different area, right in the town. The memorial is on a southern point, across the bay.

We rode back through town to a park and had our picnic lunch. We went west again out to Rt. 3 and drove south to Bremerton. We drove through the city but did not see anything of interest. Before leaving, we went by the Elks Lodge to check out the RV Park. It looked very nice, but the traffic in the area was heavy, so I don’t think we will ever stay there.

We wanted to drive to Mt. Walsh, as there is a scenic viewpoint there where you can see Seattle. Unfortunately, the clouds have still not cleared from the mountains. So far, we know that there are beautiful mountains on the Olympic Peninsula, but we have still not been able to see them! We returned to the motor home. Right after we arrived home, the rain (which was not in the forecast) started.

When everyone returned from Victoria, we went to dinner at El Cazador, and excellent Mexican restaurant. We had the waiter take a picture of all of us. Starting on the left, Carol, Ginny, Joe, Bob, Me, Al. 

Sequim is having their annual Lavender Festival / Farm Faire. They were having a Beatles Tribute by a group called Crème Tangerine.

It was raining, but since it has been raining most of the time we have been here, we have to keep going! We stood in the rain for a while, this is Al, Bob, Joe, and Ginny. then finally walked into the Wine/Beer tent and eventually found seats in the beer/wine tent. This Ginny and Joe. 

And below, Al and Carol. 

We stayed to the very end. The music was pretty good, although they would play some other songs besides the Beatles. Some of the people were dancing, in the rain, but everyone seemed to be having fun. There was even a guy in a wheelchair dancing, he was having a great time, rolling the chair in different directions to the music!

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